|Molecular weight||244.309 g/mol|
|Names and Identifiers|
|Traditional Name||D-Biotin, Biotin, vitamin B7, vitamin H, coenzyme R|
|CAS Registry Number||58-85-5|
Biotin is a water-soluble B vitamin, also called vitamin B7 and formerly known as vitamin H or coenzyme R.
Biotin is an important component of enzymes involved in metabolizing fats and carbohydrates, influencing cell growth, and affecting amino acids involved in protein synthesis. Biotin assists in various metabolic reactions involving the transfer of carbon dioxide. It may also be helpful in maintaining a steady blood sugar level. Biotin is often recommended as a dietary supplement for strengthening hair and nails, though scientific data supporting these outcomes are weak. Nevertheless, biotin is found in many cosmetics and health products for the hair and skin.
Biotin deficiency is rare. The amounts needed are small, a wide range of foods contain biotin, and intestinal bacteria synthesize biotin, which is then absorbed by the host animal. For that reason, statutory agencies in many countries, for example the USA and Australia, have not formally established a recommended daily intake of biotin. Instead, an Adequate Intake (AI) is identified based on the theory that average intake meets needs. Future research could result in biotin AIs with EARs and RDAs (see Dietary Reference Intake section).
A number of rare metabolic disorders exist in which an individual’s metabolism of biotin is abnormal, such as deficiency in the holocarboxylase synthetase enzyme which covalently links biotin onto the carboxylase, where the biotin acts as a cofactor.
Biotin is composed of a ureido ring fused with a tetrahydrothiophene ring. A valeric acid substituent is attached to one of the carbon atoms of the tetrahydrothiophene ring. Biotin is a coenzyme for multiple carboxylase enzymes, which are involved in the digestion of carbohydrates, synthesis of fatty acids, and gluconeogenesis. Biotin is also required for the catabolism and utilization of the three branched-chain amino acids: leucine, isoleucine, and valine.